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Rains sow hope for bumper Rabi crop.
Jan 27, 2022

Backed by rains this month which helped ongoing sowing operation and served the standing crops well in most states, the overall acreage of rabi (winter sown) crops is all set to create a new record in what may eventually lead to bumper output of foodgrains for a second successive pandemic-hit year.
Though the acreage of wheat this season continues to be marginally less than its sown area in the corresponding period last year, the higher acreage of oilseeds and pulses may help in setting the new record. Acreage data of agriculture ministry as on last Friday showed the total sown area under rabi crop at 680 lakh hectares compared to 672 lakh hectares during corresponding period last year — an increase of over 1%. It, however, reported an increase of nearly 9% compared to normal sown area (625 lakh hectares) of rabi crops during corresponding period. The normal sown area is calculated as an average of last five years’ acreage.
The high acreage this year indicates the possibility of higher output of foodgrains in the 2021-22 crop year compared to previous year’s production. Although the acreage of wheat was around 4 lakh hectares less as on last Friday, pulses’ sown areas showed an increase of over 1 lakh hectares and acreage of oilseeds showed an increase of over 18 lakh hectares (23%) compared to its sown areas during corresponding period in 2019-20.
'Substantial increase in acreage of oilseeds is attributed to farmers’ choice in its favour which is influenced by higher hike in MSP of mustard and rapeseed. Higher sown area along with favourable weather conditions including a wet spell at appropriate time will help farmers in getting higher output in 2021-22,' said an official in agriculture ministry.
The ministry has already estimated higher production of kharif (summer sown) crops, including record output of paddy in 2021-22, indicating how this along with high rabi crops’ output will make the current year more productive than the previous one.
Total production of kharif crops in India is estimated at record 150 million tonnes (MT) which is over 12 MT higher than the average production of previous five years (2015-16 to 2019-20). As far as paddy is concerned, its output during 2021-22 is estimated at 107 MT which is over 9 MT higher than its average output of the past five years.